Jewellery tops the Christmas shopping list for festive thieves

12 December 2019

  • Value of claims has increased by a third (30%) since 2013
  • Jewellery tops the list as the go-to item for thieves
  • According to analysis of hundreds of thousands of home insurance claims

The Co-op is warning home owners to remain vigilant over the festive period as it reveals the top 10 most commonly stolen items.

An analysis of hundreds of thousands of home insurance claims reveals that since 2013, the average value of items being stolen has increased by almost a third (30%)*.

Jewellery tops the list as the most frequently stolen item followed by cash, sentimental items, laptops and televisions**. The ten items most frequently stolen from UK homes is as follows:

The 10 items most commonly stolen from UK homes

  1. Jewellery (34%)
  2. Cash (32%)
  3. Sentimental item(s) (23%)
  4. A laptop, computer or tablet taken (19%)
  5. TV (17%)
  6. Record(s) or CD(s) stolen (11%)
  7. Games console (10%)
  8. Mobile phone (8%)
  9. Radio (6%)
  10. Alcohol (6%)

For this reason, Co-op Insurance and Neighbourhood Watch are urging people to be extra vigilant, as poor home security and cars filled with gifts can be easy pickings for opportunistic thieves over the festive period.

Top tips from Co-op’s Caroline Hunter to help keep homes and possessions safe this Christmas

  1. Double check windows and doors are closed and securely locked and If you have an alarm, make sure you set it
  2. Keep curtains closed when lights are on inside – dark nights make it easier for burglars to work out when a house is unoccupied
  3. Keep presents well hidden, even when they’ve been opened and if your Christmas tree is near a window, don’t leave presents under it
  4. If you’re heading out Christmas shopping in your car, be sure to leave gifts out of view and locked in the boot
  5. Be careful what you post on social media. As tempting as it can be to post about gifts on social media, think carefully who will can see your posts and make sure you check your privacy settings to manage this
  6. Discard large cardboard packaging as this can give burglars an idea of what’s inside your house
  7. Whilst Christmas shopping remain vigilant and keep your belongings in sight. Busy crowds can be an easy target for pick pockets
  8. Check your insurance policy, presents in your home will be covered by your usual contents insurance, but if you've bought big ticket items, they may need to be listed separately.
  9. Make sure high value items such as gadgets are covered outside of your home as these are not necessarily covered on a standard home insurance policy
  10. Check to see your insurance policy covers accidental damage cover so that any breakages to new items such as laptops, or wine spillages over the Christmas period are covered

Caroline Hunter, Head of Home Insurance at Co-op Insurance, said:

“No matter what time of the year, burglary is an extremely upsetting experience. With the festive period being a particularly busy time for lots of us, our homes are often unoccupied whilst visiting family and friends. Taking some simple security measures can help reduce the risk of being burgled - for example, make sure presents and valuables are kept out of sight from potential thieves.”

John Hayward-Cripps, CEO of Neighbourhood Watch, said:

“The research shows that many of the items burglars target, are in fact items which people will be giving or receiving this Christmas. Over the festive season, we’d encourage people to put extra measures in place to protect properties and belongings – whether that’s disposing of larger packaging boxes at the tip or installing some form of home security camera.”

For peace of mind during the festive period Co-op Insurance automatically increases its customer’s contents cover by 10% in the weeks before and after Christmas and New Year to allow for the extra gifts and valuables in the home. ***

Notes to Editor

*Claims data analysed from Co-op’s Home Insurance products from 2013 – 2018

**Research conducted on behalf of Co-op Insurance by YouGov among 4,000 UK adults in October 2019

***10% uplift during the 30 days before and 30 days after a religious event or festival

Media Contacts:

Claire Newmarch: Claire.newmarch@coop.co.uk / 07808 609 944
Hannah Charlton: Hannah.charlton@coop.co.uk / 07713 314 894

About Co-op Insurance

Co-op Insurance is part of Co-op Group, one of the world’s largest consumer co-ops, owned by millions of members. Alongside Co-op Insurance, we have the UK’s fifth biggest food retailer, the UK’s number one funeral services provider, and a developing legal services business.

As well as having clear financial and operational objectives, the Group is a recognised leader for its social goals and community-led programmes.

About Neighbourhood Watch

Neighbourhood Watch’s aim is to bring neighbours together to create strong, friendly, active communities where crime and anti-social behaviour are less likely to happen.

Neighbourhood Watch’s vision is that of a caring society that is focused on trust and respect in which people are safe from crime and enjoy a good quality of life. Neighbourhood Watch is about making sure that fewer people feel afraid, vulnerable or isolated in the place where they live.